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English poet
(1788 - 1824)
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Of all tales 'tis the saddest--and more sad,
  Because it makes us smile.
      - Don Juan (canto XIII, st. 9) [Sadness]

Society is now one polished horde,
  Formed of two mighty tribes, the Bores and Bored.
      - Don Juan (canto XIII, st. 95) [Bores]

All human history attests
  That happiness for man,--the hungry sinner!--
    Since Eve ate apples, much depends on dinner.
      - Don Juan (canto XIII, st. 99) [Eating]

O Time! Why dost not pause? Thy scythe so dirty
  With rust, should surely cease to hack and hew.
    Reset it; shave more smoothly, also slower,
      If but to keep thy credit as a mower.
      - Don Juan (canto xiv) [Time]

'Tis strange--but true; for truth is always strange,
  Stranger than fiction.
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 101) [Truth]

Death, so called, is a thing which makes men weep,
  And yet a third of life is pass'd in sleep.
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 3) [Death]

He though at heart like courtly Chesterfield,
  Who, after a long chase o'er hills, dales, bushes,
    And what not, though he rode beyond all price,
      Ask'd next day, "if men ever hunted twice?"
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 35) [Chase]

He ne'er presumed to make an error clearer;--
  In short, there never was a better hearer.
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 37) [Hearing]

And then he danced;--all foreigners excel
  The serious Angles in the eloquence
    Of pantomime;--he danced, I say right well,
      With emphasis, and also with good sense--
        A thing in footing indispensable:
          He danced without theatrical pretence,
            Not like a ballet-master in the van
              Of his drill'd nymphs, but like a gentleman.
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 38) [Dancing]

Of all the horrid, hideous notes of woe,
  Sadder than owl-songs or the midnight blast;
    Is that portentous phrase, "I told you so."
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 50)
        [Prophecy (Prophesy)]

And whether coldness, pride, or virtue dignify
  A woman, so she's good, what does it signify?
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 57) [Women]

There was no great disparity of years,
  Though much in temper; but they never clash'd,
    They moved like stars united in their spheres,
      Or like the Rhone by Leman's waters wash'd,
        Where mingled and yet separate appears
          The river from the lake, all bluely dash'd
            Through the serene and placid glassy deep,
              Which fain would lull its river-child to sleep.
      - Don Juan (canto XIV, st. 87) [Matrimony]

She had a good opinion of advice,
  Like all who give and eke receive it gratis,
    For which small thanks are still the market price,
      Even where the article at highest rate is.
      - Don Juan (canto XV, st. 29)
        [Advice : Proverbs]

A lovely being, scarcely formed or moulded,
  A rose with all its sweetest leaves yet folded.
      - Don Juan (canto XV, st. 43) [Beauty]

There's music in the sighing of a reed;
  There's music in the gushing of a rill;
    There's music in all things, if men had ears:
      Their earth is but an echo of the spheres.
      - Don Juan (canto XV, st. 5) [Music]

But 't was a public feast, and public day,--
  Quite full, right dull, guests hot, and dishes cold,
    Great plenty, much formality, small cheer,
      And everybody out of their own sphere.
      - Don Juan (canto XVI) [Feasting]

So well she acted all and every part
  By turns--with that vivacious versatility,
    Which many people take for want of heart.
      They err--'tis merely what is call'd mobility,
        A thing of temperament and not of art,
          Though seeming so, from its supposed facility;
            And false--though true; for surely they're sincerest
              Who are strongly acted on by what is nearest.
      - Don Juan (canto XVI, st. 97) [Character]

Our life is two-fold; sleep hath its own world,
  A boundary between the things misnamed
    Death and existence.
      - Dream (st. 1, l. 1) [Life]

A change came o'er the spirit of my dream.
      - Dream (st. 3) [Change : Dreams]

There is a tear for all who die,
  A mourner o'er the humblest grave.
      - Elegiac Stanzas--On the Death of Sir Peter Parker, Bart

Believe a woman or an epitaph,
  Or any other thing that's false.
      - English Bards and Scotch Reviewers [Women]

Perverts the Prophets, and purloins the Psalms.
      - English Bards and Scotch Reviewers
         (l. 326) [Quotations]

On, Amos Cottle!--Phoebus! what a name!
      - English Bards and Scotch Reviewers
         (l. 399) [Names]

'Tis pleasant, sure, to see one's name in print;
  A book's a book, although there's nothing in 't.
      - English Bards and Scotch Reviewers (l. 51)
        [Books : Proverbs]

Fools are my theme, let satire be my song.
      - English Bards and Scotch Reviewers (l. 6)

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